Monday, February 24, 2014

Riot COI: A woefully unprepared Police

It was good that Andrew Loh was present at the COI on the riot and shared his findings with us.

For a while I had felt that our police force have become complacent and completely KPI driven.

Delivering well on KPI make them look good but complacency can only be felt in our daily interactions with them.

I will never forget this. My father had passed away in SGH. Police have cut their services perhaps to manage costs and I could not report the death at the hospital but had to go to the station or what they now called neighborhood police center. The fact that it is still a station in my mind showed how badly they are communicating with the public. It cost money to bring a message to everyone.

The nearest police center was across the street, the huge Cantonment Complex. It was a very secure and forbidding place but the three sleepy officers were very polite. They printed me the death certificate which I took to the undertaker at 2 am in the morning. When I showed the undertaken the death certificate he told me it has no serial number! I was terribly upset that I needed to drive all the way back to the Cantonment Complex to get it fixed. It was damn sloppy work.

A riot in today Singapore is a Black Swan event for the Police. It is naturally not in the KPI. I am doubtful there are KPIs for assessing such risks and taking preventive measures so that there is not even a chance for a bud to sprout. This is the same poor attitude at SMRT which is woefully unprepared for surprises too. It costs money to be better prepared.

Does it surprise anyone that once the facts get revealed at the COI, we learn how badly trained our police officers are to cope with a riot? What else are they woefully unprepared for?


  1. Our policemen are busy protecting the politicians and harassing the opposition. This episode shows how sloppy there were and were partly to be blamed for the riot going out of hand and yet so many poor foreign workers get repatriated without a chance at justice. What is happening to our country

  2. Our msm kept harping on how prepared our SCDF and with intention to pain PAP in good light with ministers grazing the so-called staged "riot" show occassionally and those actors busy hurling rocks and stones at the police car that shoot water jet, look impressive? Nothing beat the real test like those in little india, the rowdy foreigners prevails. The rest became memorable history and no COIs will eventually know what went wrong. Probably a few more riots may just wake up the establishement to see the roots of all these problems facing Singapore.